Northern Copperhead

Agkistrodon contortrix mokasen

Northern Copperhead Northern Copperhead
Photo by Robert Rold Photography Photo by Robert Rold Photography
Northern Copperhead on road
Photo by Eric Williams

Description:  The Northern Copperhead ranges in size from 2-3.5 feet.  Body coloration is light tan with dark brown bands.  The bands are narrower across the back and wider at the sides.  Small dark brown spots are usually found between the bands.  Head is a copper color.  Pupils of eyes are vertical.  A heat-sensing pit is located between the eye and nostril.  Juveniles are similarly colored but with a yellow tail.  Scales are weekly keeled and anal plate is not divided.  Scales are in a single row on bottom side of tail.

Habitat:  Normally found in rocky hillsides and mountainous areas, but can be found in many other areas.

Behavior:  The Northern Copperhead is venomous.  Copperheads feed on mice, amphibians, small birds, insects and other small snakes.

More information:

Copperhead - KY Snake Identification
Copperhead - Common Reptiles of KY
Northern Copperhead - NatureServe Explorer
Snakes: Information for KY Homeowners - UK Cooperative Extension

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